This is an excellent account of some of the major disasters that have occurred in Canada over it's short history.This is a book that every Canadian should read and it should be part of the school curriculum,for the simple fact that hardly anything covered in this book is even mentioned in school history courses.As well,very few Canadians have any knowledge of this aspect of our history.Nor has much of any of these disasters been included in Canadian literature.
Take for example the Sinking of The Empress of Ireland.Just ask any Canadian if they ever heard of The Empress of Ireland,and you get a blank stare.
Who hasnn't heard of the sinking of the Titanic,which I also can't recall ever being covered in school history orfor even the Halifax Explosion.
The Empress of Ireland was a sister ship of the Titanic and it sank in Canadian waters,actually The St Lawrence,two years after the Titanic.There were actually more passengers ,840,who lost their lives on the Empress while 818 passengers died on the Titanic.The total loss of life on the Titanic 1517,was greater than with the Empress which lost a total of 1012.The Titanic had a total on board of 2214 as compared to the Empress with 1477,because,being a luxury sailing,the Titantic carried a much greater complement of crew.
Another very interesting thing you'll read about in the book,and is also virtually unknown to Canadians today,is that in December 1942 the Caribou,was sunk in Canadian waters ,between Nova Scotia and Newfoundland.It was an unarmed passenger and car ferry and was torprdoed by a Naszi U-Boat with a loss of 136 people.
Although the Halifax Explosion on December 6,1917 is more commonly known;but few realize how bad it really was.It was the largest man made explosion in the world prior to th Atomic bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima.1963 people were killed ,9000 were injured and 25,000 were left homeless.
How about the Train Wreck near Hamilton that claimed 60 deaths;the Theater Fire in
Montreal that killed 78,the Forest Fire that killed 223 in the small Ontario town of Matheson ?
So,Canada's had its share of disasters ,from Shipwrecks,to Mine Disasters,Ice Storms,Droughts,Air Crashes,Bridge Filures,Hurricanes, and even a Tsunami;and it's all to be found in this great book.